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With 96 percent of dogs relinquished to shelters that did not have obedience training, according to the National Council on Pet Population Study and Policy(NCPPSP), Petsmart celebrates National Train Your Dog Month in January.

Debbie McKnight, training expert for Petsmart, remarked, “Training, or lack thereof, is one of the primary reasons dogs are turned into shelters, making National Train Your Dog Month a good time to focus on this important topic. We want all pets to stay in their homes forever and helping pet parents and their pets learn good habits through training is the perfect place to start.”

In related news, the Association of Pet Dog Trainers (APDT) announced its annual campaign in January, National Train Your Dog Month, will include free educational webinars and live chats with training and behavioral professionals.

Petsmart revealed that some of the common struggles associated with pet relinquishment at shelters can be easily rectified with dog training and reinforcing the training at home. These techniques include leash pulling, potty training challenges, and anxiety such as fear or aggression. Petsmart training classes use positive reinforcement training so that dogs are rewarded for doing desired behaviors. Petsmart believes linking visual cues to motivational rewards helps to train a dog, is the most humane way, and is fun for both pet and pet parents.

Petsmart trainers complete a rigorous accreditation program that was developed with expert pet trainers and animal behaviorists. Group training courses for every lifestage as well as private training classes are available at all Petsmart stores. Petsmart also offers the Smart Pet Promise” allowing pet parents who are not 100% satisfied to take the class again for free.

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